This Sunday Americans will be praying extra hard. It’s Superbowl Sunday, and according to a recent study, one out of four Americans believe that God intervenes on behalf of sports teams. Does He?
Well, only God knows the answer to that question. If I had to guess, however, here’s what I would suggest:
1. God Does Care: God cares about what we care about, because God cares about us! But here’s the catch: God cares more about character than winning.
God is not a Ravens or a 49-er fan. God is a fan of humanity.
2. God wants us to care about the right things: Vinci Lombardi famously said that winning isn’t everything. It’s the only thing. But did he really believe it?
If winning is the only thing, then cheating is fine as long as you can get away with it. If winning is the only thing, then taking illegal drugs is fine as long as nobody knows. If winning is the only thing, then the smartest strategy would always be to try to injure the other team’s best player.
Winning is important. It’s very important. But it’s not the only thing.
3. God wants us to enjoy ourselves: Superbowl Sunday can be lots of fun. It’s a great opportunity to spend time with friends and family and watch great athletes work hard to achieve the ultimate championship.
In Judaism, God does not desire asceticism. We have no tradition of hermits or monks. God desires engagement with life. The classic Jewish toast is l’chayim, to life.
The Superbowl is a time to celebrate a great tradition that brings us together. We may take different sides, but we play in the same game of life.
By Evan Moffic